Valhalla was one of the most successful and most tenured House teams at ImprovOlympic having had 75% of its final cast as original members who performed from the first show until its last, exactly 6 years later.
During that time, Valhalla performed 271 Harold shows in the cabaret space downstairs at iO Chicago and 350 shows together as a team. They had 2 extended team runs in the Del Close Theater performing the forms The Living Room (16 months) and Blue Velvet Lounge (2 months). In addition to the Harold, The Living Room, and Blue Velvet Lounge, Valhalla has also performed the Deconstruction and the Movie for extended periods of time.
Valhalla was coached by Liz Allen, named Coach of the Year in 1999, 2000, and 2001 (and subsequently the Del Close Award for Coach of the Year was renamed the Liz Allen Coach of the Year Award). Valhalla was also voted Favorite Cabaret team in 1999 and 2001.
Members of the original cast of Valhalla that performed the final show together (and what they went on to do):
- Mike Abdelsayed (Second City, iO)
- John Lutz (Second City, Saturday Night Live, 30 Rock)
- Matt Chapman (iO, Boom! Chicago)
- Jim Carlson (Second City Director)
- Sarah Gee (Second City TourCo)
- Rich Prouty (iO, ComedySportz)
Members that joined early on and stayed until the final performance:
Valhalla is also part of The Family Tree-tenured groups that can trace their coaching to ImprovOlympic's legendary team The Family. Valhalla was coached by Liz Allen who was on Frank Booth. Frank Booth was coached by Craig Cackowski, a member of Mr. Blonde. Mr. Blonde was coached by Matt Besser, a member of The Family, who was coached by Del Close.
A little unknown fact: For most of Valhalla this was the first team that they had ever been on.
Another little known fact: One person on this team was placed on Valhalla in their third week of Level 1, at the age of 20. And they weren't the youngest person on the team.
Final little known fact: Valhalla just about swept the Del Awards in 2001, being awarded:
- Favorite Cabaret Team 2001
- Those Guys for Best Scripted Show
- Molly for Best walk on (oddly enough as Curtis the Lemonade Stand Thief)
- John for most supportive player
- Liz for coach of the year (now named the Liz Allen Coach of the Year award)
- Craig for Best Host
- Molly for Most Underrated Player
Ok, one more: The reason it was odd that Molly won the award for Curtis, the Lemonade Stand Thief, was that Curtis, in fact made his appearance over 1 and a half years prior and was already nominated (and lost) for the Del Awards in 2000! Now, that's a memorable walk-on. Go Curtis!